What impact do you have on those around you?
I find that a lot of the time, I forget that my life - how I act, what I do, and what I don't do - affects other people. I get into my routine: church, family time, dinner, bed, physical/occupational/speech therapy appointments, school, homework, cleaning, bed. Rinse. Repeat. What I never think of is how my going into my reading bubble while Addie's in therapy or how I drive my car can actually interfere with being a messenger of the gospel.
Not only am I distracted by my to-do list, but the way that I go about that to-do list can be an example of how Christ is working in my life - or exactly the opposite. I am outspoken about my faith, but am I out-acting that faith? The fruits of the spirit are love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control (Gal 5:22) and those attributes should be obvious in my life if I am submitting to God and living as he would have me. It's been my experience that most people are turned off from Christianity not because the concepts are inconceivable, but because they had a bad experience with someone who called themselves a Christian and didn't get it right.
None of us are perfect - we wouldn't need a savior if we were - but we are called to be examples of Christ. He was never outraged over a personal offense. As a matter of fact, he died for the people who were criticizing, cursing, and beat him. He never backed down from what he taught to make people more comfortable, but he invested time and energy in getting to know them and loving them, changing hearts through relationship.
So, give up those Facebook tirades and Twitter attacks on those who disagree with you and take the time to make sure you're having a positive impact on your true sphere of influence - family, friends, coworkers, and others you see on a daily basis. Show people through the way you live what Christ is capable when he gets a hold of a willing heart.
The most obvious sign of another believer to me, especially nowadays when anger, malice, and sadness seem to rule, is usually the joy that we have through the hope of Jesus Christ.
You will show me the way of life,
granting me the joy of your presence
and the pleasures of living with you forever.
Praying that you get to experience this amazing joy and that it has a radical effect on those you encounter.
Her One and Only
by Becky Wade
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
What happens when a super manly sports star's life is in jeopardy? Naturally you hire a slender, model-looking female security agent to guard him. The premise for this book is outlandish and laughable, but if you can get around that (which, let's face it, as romantic fiction readers we are probably accustomed to doing so) you will get so much enjoyment out of this story.
I love the battle of the wills between Dru and Gray. I'm pretty sure that Dru is my spirit animal, starting with her superhuman stubbor--ahem determination, right down to the affinity for Cool Ranch Doritos, Coke, and bad-for-you breakfast foods. Gray can definitely hold his own, and I love that he is very kind and caring in his own way, while still being able to stand toe to toe with the Revengeress -- btw the best nickname ever.
Dru's inner monologues are some of THE most hilarious sentiments I've ever read. "Some people received actual, useful benefits at their jobs - like dental coverage. She'd have preferred dental coverage." LOL and the chemistry on that first kiss... Whew.
On a spiritual level, I LOVE Love love Dru's testimony and that she still faces the reality of temptation, while still calling Gray on his lifestyle and that he actually has the conviction to let God work on the way he's living his life.
Finally, I loved that we got to see Meg and Bo and what they have been through over the last ten years. Wow. Just wow. The reality and transparency in their struggle with infertility and trusting God through it was very impacting.
Oh wow... All the feels. The last Porter family book most certainly is the end of an era and I'm not ashamed to say I am teary-eyed at the thought of it's closing, but what a great adventure it's been.